Deadly Strain Of E. coli Found In Recalled Ground Beef

DENVER--The Consumer Protection Division of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Monday urged Coloradans who purchased certain Moran's ground beef from Albertsons stores to check the product for specific code information and discard it or return it to the place of purchase for a refund. The ground beef has been recalled due to possible contamination with E. coli O157:H7.

United Food Group, LLC, a Vernon, Calif., establishment, voluntarily recalled approximately 75,000 pounds of its ground beef products, which were distributed at Albertsons stores in Colorado. Since the recall, Albertsons has removed all possibly contaminated products from its stores. Any product now available in the stores is not involved in the recall.

The labels of the recalled ground beef bear the Moran's label and the establishment number "EST. 1241" inside the USDA mark of inspection. All of the products bear a "sell by" date of "May/06/07," a "freeze by" date of "May/07/07" or a "produced on" date of "April /20/07."

The products subject to the recall include the following:

· 10-pound boxes of "MORAN'S All Natural, 73/27 fine ground beef"

· 10-pound boxes of "MORAN'S All Natural, 90/10 fine ground sirloin"

· 2-pound chubs of "INTER-AMERICAN PRODUCTS 93/7 ground beef"

· 1-pound chubs of "INTER-AMERICAN PRODUCTS 80/20 ground beef"

· 1-pound chubs of "MORAN'S All Natural 73/27 ground beef"

· 5-pound chubs of "MORAN'S All Natural 73/27 ground beef"

· 3-pound chubs of "MORAN'S All Natural 73/27 ground beef"

· 1-pound chubs of "MORAN'S All Natural, 90/10 fine ground sirloin"

· 2-pound chubs of "MORAN'S All Natural 93/7 ground beef"

· 2-pound chubs of "MORAN'S All Natural 96/4 ground beef"

· 3-pound chubs of "STATER BROS. MARKETS 73/27 ground beef"

Daniel Rifkin, Wholesale Food Program manager for the Department of Public Health and Environment's Consumer Protection Division, said, "It is important that any consumer who purchased the ground beef with the specified recalled codes discard the product."

Rifkin explained that E. coli O157:H7 is a potentially deadly bacterium that can cause bloody diarrhea and dehydration. The very young, seniors and people with compromised immune systems are the most susceptible to foodborne illness.

State laboratory tests have identified two E.coli 0157:H7 cases in Colorado that have been linked to the recalled ground beef. Both adults became ill in early May and have fully recovered.

The possible contamination of the product was discovered through sampling done by the California Department of Health Services and the Colorado Health Department, in coordination with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in the course of an investigation into reported illnesses. The ground beef products were produced on April 20, 2007 and were shipped to retail distribution centers in Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon and Utah.

Consumers with questions about the recall can call the department's Consumer Protection Division at 303-692-3620. Consumers with general food safety questions also can "Ask Karen," USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service virtual representative available 24 hours a day at AskKaren.gov . The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry hotline at 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.


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